Scott Westerfeld
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Dalek Week Halfway Done!

December 20th, 2013

Dalek Week 2013, the Deviant Art celebration of all things Deryn and Alek, is about halfway over (depend ending on one’s timezone), and there are some lovely pieces up.

This work by Thisoneofmarvels is for the “Scotland” theme, and uses the Scottish and Austrian flags as motifs:

dalekflags small
Click on image to embiggen.

Very beautiful! I love how serious Deryn is.

There are many more to see, so head over to the Dalek Week 2013 folder to feast your eyes and leave your praise.

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Dalek Week on Deviant Art

December 16th, 2013

It’s almost time for the annual Deryn/Alek (Dalek) week on Deviant art!

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By miyaginoasakura.

Dalek Week goes from Dec 16 to Dec 22, and challenges you to upload one piece of art per day. Each day has a theme:

1-Cake
2-Scotland
3-Austria
4-Help
5-Despair
6-Costumes
7-Happy days

Click here to enjoy the spoils of Dalek Week. (I’ll be posting a few of the submitted pieces later this week.)

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New Japanese Leviathan Cover

December 7th, 2013

Just received the new Japanese cover for Leviathan, the paperback version!

(Actually, the previous edition was also a paperback, but a larger format. For my future bibliographers: the old one was 184mm x 106mm, and this new one is 148mm x 105mm.)

In any case, here’s the new Japanese cover!

japaneseleviathannew

I like how this cover is a bit darker, and steampunkier, than the old one. Alek looks a bit less young, and his goggles are better too. Also, it has a blurb from Hideaki Sena, novelist, microbiologist, and president of the SF&F Writers of Japan. Thanks for that!

For comparison, here’s the old one:

leviathanjapan2011pb_450

Can’t wait to see the rest of the series come out with this new look.

Click here to see my collected covers, for editions foreign and domestic.

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$1.99 Sale of Uglies and Leviathan Ebooks

December 3rd, 2013

News Flash: Uglies and Leviathan ebooks are on sale!
Both titles are $1.99 for all of December. ‘Snot bad.
(This applies to the USA only.)

ebooks

For Leviathan on Nook, click here.
For Uglies on Nook, click here.

For Leviathan on iBooks, click here.
For Uglies on iBooks, click here.

For Leviathan on Kindle, click here.
For Uglies on Kindle, click here.

And for Uglies on Kobo, click here. (Leviathan isn’t on sale on Kobo. Sorry!)

If the internets somehow brought you here with no knowledge of what these books are about, you can check them out here and here.

What the hell. I’m just going to throw in some laudatory quotes:

Leviathan
“Full of nonstop action, this steampunk adventure is sure to become a classic.”
School Library Journal

“When a book pursues you into your dreams, you can’t ignore it.”
Sunday Telegraph

“Wouldn’t it be cool if the First World War had been fought with genetically engineered mutant animals, against steam-powered walking machines? And the answer is, Yes, it would.”
The New York Times

Uglies
“A superb piece of popular art.”
New York Times

“This book, the first in a trilogy, asks engaging questions about the meaning of beauty, individuality, and betrayal. Highly recommended for SF fans or anyone who likes a good, thoughtful adventure.”
Kliatt (starred)

“With a beginning and ending that pack hefty punches, this introduction to a dystopic future promises an exciting series.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred)

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Leviathan Table (Fan Art!)

December 2nd, 2013

This is pretty cool. It’s a table restoration by Fiona S. and her grandma, featuring monoplanes, the Emperor’s airyacht, and a kraken on the top.

image-1

Here’s a close up of the air yacht Stamboul:

image

But wait, there’s more!

The side panels feature a flechette bat . . .

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a strafing hawk . . .

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a message lizard . . .

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and the ever-popular perspicacious loris!

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Truly a magnificent piece. And it’s great to see everything in such vibrant colors. May you have many fine tea parties on this table, Fiona.

Just a wee headsup: There may be some Uglies news before the end of the year, or in early 2014. Look for it right here, or in the pages of your favorite industry rag.

UPDATE: Ebooks of both Uglies and Leviathan are on sale for all of December in the USA. Click here for details.

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Russian Goliath

November 26th, 2013

Please enjoy the Russian cover of Goliath. The book comes out in December in Russia!

BZ4Evu8CEAIzw2i

And here are the others, for your referencing pleasure:

The lovely Leviathan:

And the possibly even more awesome Behemoth:

Things I like about this series of covers:

Book 1 has Deryn, Book 2 has Alek, and Book 3 has them both. Like the US paperbacks, but with Deryn first.

The clothes are great (especially Alek’s leather trousers). Painter can paint.

Love the Leviathan itself. True to the book, but it glows in a way that only this color medium can produce.

The person in front with the Big Object in the background is kind of a theme of the books. That is, the struggles of the characters are foregrounded, but the scale of background events (and creatures and machines) is always huge and within view. Keith was very careful that the illustrations always alternated between close-ups to pulled-out images, from faces to Big Stuff. It’s nice to see both scales represented here on all three covers.

Well done, Eksmo.

ALSO: If you’ve never read this book I wrote called Uglies before, you can do so now for free on PulseIt, but you have to join up to do so.

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Uglies Is Free in the UK

November 13th, 2013

If you live in the United Kingdom, you can acquire the e-book of Uglies for the low cost of FREE from iTunes.

[Alas, this offer is no longer.]

Hope all your NaNoWriMoings are going well. Today’s NaNo hint is: Don’t forget that visual aids can help you organize your novel!

Here’s my Action/Tension plot from the first few chapters of Behemoth. Each index card represents one chapter. I add the chapter description, the Action/Tension labels, and the color-coded POV pushpins (red for Deryn, blue for Alek). This is all really easy in Scrivener:

Screen Shot 2013-07-12 at 9.35.27 PM

Rather than software, some writers use physical objects to help organize their novels. Here is Lauren Beukes’ “murder wall,” which she used to keep the serial killings in The Shining Girls straight:

Murder-Wall
photo credit: Morne van Zyl

Image ganked from this interview in Zola Books.

I can just imagine the South African police busting into Lauren’s home on an unrelated matter, seeing this murder wall, and being all, “Check the basement.”

Diana Peterfreund also uses a physical medium for plot tracking, color-coded sticky notes!

rampantplotboard

Her blog post about this “plot board” is here. This one is for the book Rampant, which I blurbed.

Those of you with more monochromatic tastes should check out Justine’s post about How to Write a Novel, which includes this spreadsheet for word-count and POV tracking:

mormss

Of course, it doesn’t matter what combination of yarn/software/post-its you employ. Whatever helps you visualize your novel’s structure, and gets your eyes out the trees so you can see the forest, is awesome.

Just remember, a good novel isn’t just a piece of text; it’s a terrain, a country, even a world. As its ruler, you should probably have a map.

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NaNoWriMo

November 4th, 2013

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As you may have heard (in this interview or this one) my next book is about a young novelist. She’s eighteen, newly published and moved to New York City, and is a product of NaNoWriMo.

For those of you who are unfamiliar, NaNoWriMo is also known as National Novel Writing Month, and is a grand tradition in which a few hundred thousand people attempt to write a book in thirty days. (Actually, they try to write several hundred thousand books. They aren’t all working on the same one. Duh.)

Alas, I finished Afterworlds only a few weeks ago, so it won’t come out until next October. So for next NaNoWriMo, I intend to produce vast quantities of writing advice posts for all of you. (Wondrous altruism or clever marketing? You decide.) But how does that help you brave NaNoWriMoers this year?

It does not.

Luckily, back in 2009, Justine and I switched off in creating a whole month’s worth of writing advice posts, one each day. And unlike tech advice and TV criticism, writing advice never gets old. So here’s a handy set of links for your NaNoWriMoing edification.

The odd-numbered posts are mine, and the evens are Justine’s.

Best of luck to you all!

Nano Tip #1: Dialog Spine

NaNo Tip #2: The Zen of First (Zero) Drafts

NaNo Tip #3: Dialog Spine Analysis

NaNo Tip #4: Word Count is Not Everything

NaNo Tip #5: Write Your Way Out

NaNo Tip #6: Emergency Unstucking Techniques

NaNo Tip #7: Stealing from Chandler

NaNo Tip #8: Square Brackets

NaNo Tip #9: Meta Documents

NaNo Tip #10: Don’t Skip the Tricky Bits

NaNo Tip #11: Passages of Disbelief

NaNo Tip #12: Turn the Internet Off

NaNo Tip #13: Pace Charts

NaNo Tip #14: Procrastination Can Be Your Friend

NaNo Tip #15: Take the Day Off

NaNo Tip #16: Edit As You Go

NaNo Tip #17: Making Writing a Habit

NaNo Tip #18: Breaking with Stereotypes

NaNo Tip #19: Read Out Loud

NaNo Tip #20: Don’t Wait for the Muse to Strike

NaNo Tip #21: Writers Re-Read

NaNo Tip #22: Read Bad Books

NaNo Tip #23: Change Your Brain

NaNo Tip #24: Writing While White

NaNo Tip #25: Read it Backwards

NaNo Tip #26: Giving Thanks

NaNo Tip #27: Word Clouds

NaNo Tip #28: Take Care of Yourself

NaNo Tip #29: Finish Everything

NaNo Tip #30: Rewriting

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Polymath Tat

October 23rd, 2013

As part of my continuing effort to BLOG MORE OFTEN, I bring you some fan art of a very lasting nature. Jess Y has been a fan of mine since my first YA book, Midnighters, came out. She has a particular love of Dess. (I would say it’s their rhyming names, but Dess is my favorite character too.)

Jess recently decided to immortalize her Dess-love in skin ink. So I present to you the polymath tattoo:

desstat

As you can see, it’s still a bit new and raw.

For those of you who haven’t read Midnighters, each of the five characters has their own symbol. The symbol for each character appears at the end of any chapter that they are the viewpoint character for. (BEST. SENTENCE. EVER.)

What you may not know is that I designed the symbols using a fractal program. (Those who can’t draw, fractal.) Alas, all of the original designs have been lost do to software decay. That is, the fractal software I used will no longer run or open files on today’s operating systems.

Luckily, I did save one of my early attempts as a jpg. So here it is:

original fractal dess symbol

Pretty cool, huh? My fractal math has left the building, so that’s all I have to say.

Note that this is the third known midnighter tattoo. This guy also has Dess’s polymath tat, and this girl went for Jessica’s flamebringer tattoo.

Note: Book-related tats are not a requirement for my fans. But feel free!

See you soon, gaudily festooned poltroons.

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Smoky Days, Interview

October 18th, 2013

The Blue Mountains have been on fire the last couple of days, which is definitely not a good thing for Sydney. Bushfires are a natural part of the cycle of nature in Australia, but it doesn’t usually start up before the first day of summer. (It’s the middle of spring down here.)

This bodes ill for the next few months (and for the next few centuries of climatic uncertainty).

Here’s what Sydney looked like from my terrace yesterday at four in the afternoon. Note that the sun was high:

smoky sydney small

Click that image for the bigger, scarier version.

Justine and I are safe in the concrete jungle, of course, many kilometers away from the fire. But we’re still breathing it, and we’ve got friends whose homes are at risk.

On a lighter note, here’s an interview I did with Amy Stevenson of 4ZZZ Radio here in Australia. I talk about the Leviathan series a lot, but also about my next novel, Afterworlds.

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